STAFF & GUEST BLOG
August 13th, 2009, by Staff

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger thinks they should.

When California high school students return to school this month they will have access to free digital science and math textbooks that meet state standards as part of Gov. Schwarzenegger’s Digital Textbooks Initiative.

Ten online textbooks meet state standards, and proponents say California school districts will save money by using the state-approved digital books. Critics say that switching to online textbooks will require additional training and resources. The plan is to expand the program to include all grades.

Are digital textbooks a step in the right direction? Share your thoughts.

STAFF & GUEST BLOG
August 8th, 2009, by Staff

Sonia Sotomayor was sworn in as the U.S. Supreme Court’s 111th justice on Saturday. It’s the first time that the ceremony has been televised. Share your thoughts on the court’s first Latina and third woman justice.

STAFF & GUEST BLOG
August 6th, 2009, by Staff

The U.S. Supreme Court has its first Hispanic (and third woman) justice. In a 68-31 vote, the U.S. Senate confirmed Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the lifetime appointment. She will be sworn in on Saturday, in a ceremony that will be televised for the first time in the court’s history.

Share your thoughts on Sotomayor’s confirmation below.

STAFF & GUEST BLOG
July 22nd, 2009, by Staff

People are not digging his “mom jeans,” and polls show (see Washington Post-ABC News and USA Today-Gallup) that President Obama’s approval rating has slipped some, particularly when it comes to healthcare policy.

He addresses that issue in a primetime news conference Wednesday night calling on lawmakers to move quickly on overhauling healthcare even as hope fades that Congress will pass reform bills by the time it breaks for August recess.

But what do you think about President Obama’s work so far? How about his progress on healthcare policy? Is he doing a good job? Share your thoughts below.

STAFF & GUEST BLOG
July 21st, 2009, by Staff

This is shaping up to be an interesting week around the universe.

The Moon, Sky, Mars and Google: President Obama marked the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing by vowing (with no specifics) to uphold NASA’s mission. Google, which is already being accused of trying to take over the Milky Way, marked the anniversary by adding the Moon to the destinations that users can explore on Google Earth (also see Sky and Mars).

Jupiter: An Australian amateur astronomer, who keeps his eye on Jupiter in his spare time, discovered an Earth-sized scar on the solar system’s largest planet. The last time scientists saw something like this on Jupiter was 15 years ago, when the Shoemaker-Levy 9 comet hit the planet.

International Space Station: Astronauts on a 16-day mission aboard the space shuttle Endeavor are tweeting and answering questions posted on YouTube (with help from colleagues on Earth).

The Sun: And last but not least, Wednesday, Asia will experience the longest total solar eclipse expected this century. The eclipse is expected to last more than six minutes.

STAFF & GUEST BLOG
July 10th, 2009, by Staff

Triple negative breast cancer recently claimed the life of longtime executive producer of The Tavis Smiley Show on Public Radio International—Sheryl Flowers. Flowers was 42.

But you’ve probably never heard of triple negative breast cancer. It is an aggressive form of breast cancer that is so named because the three receptors that successful breast cancer treatment targets—estrogen receptors, progesterone receptors and  human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)—are not found in women with this breast cancer subtype.

If you want to learn more about triple negative and other types of breast cancer, check out these resources.

1) Watch tonight’s show (see clip below). Tavis devotes the entire show to a discussion of breast cancer. He talks to one of the leading authorities on cancer risk assessment, Dr. Olufunmilayo Olopade and breast cancer survivors Diahann Carroll and television writer Jessica Queller.

2) Visit the Web site for the Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation, which has set up a memorial fund in Flowers’ memory.

3) Learn more about the disease and find support at www.breastcancer.org. You can also get help detecting breast cancer by joining the National Breast Cancer Foundation’s early detection plan.

4) Also check out Tavis’ heartfelt video blog about his friend and colleague.

STAFF & GUEST BLOG
July 3rd, 2009, by Staff

Are you firing up the grill? Watching a fireworks show? (Hopefully not producing your own fireworks show.) Loading up the family and going on a roadtrip?

Well, don’t forget to also have an eco-friendly holiday weekend. Check out the video below and these tips for adding some “green” to your red, white and blue. And share your “green” 4th of July tips with us.

And for your reading pleasure, be sure to honor the day by reading the full text of The Declaration of Independence. Be safe!

STAFF & GUEST BLOG
June 30th, 2009, by Staff

Talk about a celebration. Iraqis took to the streets to celebrate step one in U.S. troop withdrawal—removing U.S. troops from cities and towns across the country.

June 30th was declared “National Sovereignty Day” as Iraqi security forces took over control of Iraqi cities from U.S. troops six years after the U.S.-led invasion.

Seemingly emphasizing just how significant it is that Iraq would now be securing its own urban areas, a car bomb attack in Northern Iraq cut short the festivities, killed at least 20 people and injured 40.

“Those who think that Iraqis are not able to protect their country and that the withdrawal of foreign forces will create a security vacuum are committing a big mistake,” Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki said Tuesday in a televised address.

STAFF & GUEST BLOG
June 29th, 2009, by Staff

There are those YouTube members who upload video. Then there are those YouTube members who upload video that also happens to be news (you know who you are).

For all of those citizen journalists in the crowd, YouTube launched its new YouTube Reporters’ Center project Monday to help aspiring reporters learn tips from seasoned journalism professionals.

The list of journalists and reporters who contributed to the project is impressive, with videos from Bob Woodward, Katie Couric, Arianna Huffington and, of course, Tavis Smiley, to name a few.

To see Tavis and his colleagues share their thoughts on how to report the news, visit http://youtube.com/reporterscenter.

STAFF & GUEST BLOG
June 25th, 2009, by Staff

Legendary pop star Michael Jackson died Thursday at a Los Angeles hospital.

Check out Jackson obits from USA Today and MSNBC.com.

Take a look at photo galleries of MJ from the Los Angeles Times and BBC News, and check out the Michael Jackson YouTube channel.

Michael Jackson was occasionally a topic of discussion on the show. In a conversation a few months before his death, Tavis talked with singer-songwriter James Ingram about working with the “King of Pop.” Also Grammy-winning artist Ne-Yo discussed being compared to Jackson in his 2007 appearance.

Share your MJ thoughts, memories and favorite songs below.

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